Originally Posted by Wire Weasel
Become a ham. Tech license obtained with brain tied behind back. General obtained just as easy. Full legal limit power at your disposal. Off the shelf highly capable gear. UHF
band is there if that is what you like. A child old enough to operate a radio can learn the material and pass the test.
I got my ham ticket a long time ago but full power and off the shelf gear (what i could afford) got boring after awhile.
Good luck licensing a scout troop, hunting club, 4x4 convoy or my wife for radio amateur. Sure am
glad there is CB
, murs, FRS/GMRS and the 900mhz ISM band.
These FRS/GMRS blisterpack hybrids are next to useless. The most expensive units with 37, 45, 50 mile ranges, range about the same as earshot when used inside a vehicle or building.
I find the range of my old TRC-2xx handheld CBs with the big telescopic "eye poker" antenna set on lo-power superior to the most powerful FRSGMRS hybrid I own.
Because of this alot of these end up at yard sales and thrift stores often under $5.
I actually tried this the other day putting a radio on top my truck with zip ties and made a cable connecting it to an amplified speaker and mic, and had friend stand outside with the other radio. On the GMRS I had clear coms for a couple of miles but didnt test it any further out.
Not bad for a com system in which the alkaline batteries are the most expensive component, that does not poke your eye out like the CB
Some talk about putting a connector jack on their FRS GMRS hybrids, but external antennas and low loss coax cost too much, not to mention a major pita re-engineering the plastic shell to accommodate a bnc connector.
I tried that some years ago and it worked pretty good until the antenna fell off taking part the circut board with it.
So to me it makes more sense to move the cheap radio and make a longer mic cord. With GMRS you got tone codes, there is little need to chance channels. And for a battery make a dummy pack out of wood and turn it off from inside the vehicle. And as a plus you get a free ground plane by mounting it up there.
And the best part for hams is, this is legal, so long as you use channels 1-14